Edible Schoolyard Brings Garden, Kitchen to Kids (Slideshow)

By
Jessica Chou

Schoolchildren receive two gardening classes and one kitchen class a month.

The Garden

Jessica Chou

Schoolchildren receive two gardening classes and one kitchen class a month.

The 'Ramada'

Jessica Chou

The "ramada," where students begin and end each garden class (and occasionally have tastings).

Green Onions in the Garden

Jessica Chou

Extra produce is sold by students at an after-school farm stand.

Bird Feeders

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The children hung bird feeders ("not for squirls") by an Asian pear tree.

Lemon Balm

Jessica Chou

In the meantime, volunteers and staff keep up the garden.

'Joe's Peppers'

Jessica Chou

One particular volunteer is Joe, an alum of P.S. 216 who graduated in 1989, who gardens every day.

Compost Rules

Jessica Chou

Children learn how to compost, recycling used food to create soil for their gardens.

Composting

Jessica Chou

Compost bins designate the stages of composting each batch is at.

Leeks

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More than 60 varieties of plants are grown on the half-acre site.

The Hoop House

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The hoop house encases 720 square feet of usable gardening space for inclement weather.

Swiss Chard

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The garden serves 600 students, pre-kindergarten through fifth grade, teaching them to grow, harvest, and prepare produce (and enjoy fruits and vegetables, too).

Persimmons

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Last year, the garden produced more than 2,000 pounds of produce; at its peak, it should produce approximately 3,200 pounds of produce a year.

Inside the Greenhouse

Jessica Chou

Inside the greenhouse, which has a slanted roof to collect rainwater to irrigate the garden. It also contains a sink, tabletop, and composting station, along with six growing tables.

The Kitchen

Jessica Chou

The kitchen, complete with an oven, three refrigerators, one freezer, one pantry closet, one washer, one dryer, and a sink with a dishwasher.

The Greenhouse

Jessica Chou

The greenhouse doors lead out to the garden.